A Race Truck Gets Another Shot at the Spotlight

May 20th, 2011

Text and Photos by David Fetherston

Eric Steinbrecher, 1967 Chevrolet C-10, Orangevale, CA

When Chevy introduced the ‘67 model in late 1966, they announced that this new truck possessed the most significant cab and sheet metal styling changes in the history of Chevrolet. The boldness of this statement is reflected in the six model years that this body was in production until the updated 1973 truck line was introduced.

Owner and builder Eric Steinbrecher intended to build a drag racer with his ‘67 C-10, but he discovered it was a truck in trouble once he got it home and realized the long list of necessary repairs. Eric stepped back from his original idea when he understood that he could build something more significant if he pushed his ideas to the limit, the result is “Second Chance.”

Apart from the accessories, some sheet metal and glass, there is not too much that’s OEM with the ’67. The chassis is all custom, based around the original frame, which has been boxed and notched. While doing this Eric also set up the exhaust to run through the newly boxed chassis so it was out of the way. Originally the suspension was to be all four-bar for racing, but when he decided to build a custom pickup, the framework went in a new direction. The frame was notched 8 inches at the rear to allow for air ride over the 12-bolt Chevy axle running 4.10 gears and Strange axles. Up front are custom tubular A-arms with ‘bags and 2 1/2-inch dropped CPP spindles. The steering was updated with 1973 Chevy pickup OEM power steering and uses a Flaming River billet steering column with the column shift option. Eric knew that that truck would have a ton of go, so he set it up with Wilwood discs all round, using six-piston calipers up front and four-piston on the rear. This combination gives Eric enormous braking quality and height adjustability.

Eric has found that this combination delivers good ride and handling performance, especially with the major wheel setup on the truck, which uses 20 x 8 and 22 x 10 Intro Speedstar wheels capped with Nitto tires. All of the engineering and most of the bodywork were done in his workshop with the help of his uncle Bob and father, Bill Steinbrecher, using parts from the hot rod parts supply house America Pastimes.

The wheel and tire setup on the truck uses 20 x 8 and 22 x 10 Intro Speedstar wheels capped with Nitto tires.

Putting the power to the truck chassis is a rock-solid 1967 427 four-bolt built out of an OEM 396 big-block. This combination was built using a custom COMP Cams crank with special-order Dart 8.5:1 pistons and rings on Crower rods. The engine machine work and assembly were done by Big Al’s Toy Shop in Maryland, with ARP studs, Summit flywheel, COMP Cams cam and rockers with heads from Dart. These were ported and polished during assembly.

The induction is a massive and stunning assembly built around an 8.71 BDS supercharger running a 10 percent overdrive on a 3-inch belt. This drags down the fuel air mix from a pair of Demon 850 blower carburetors topped with a Speedway’s Shotgun scoop. All of this detail is polished or chromed for effect. Spark is supplied to the motor via an MSD dizzy using a 6Al ignition module. The exhaust is handled with thermally wrapped Saderson four-into-one headers that exit into a 2-inch exhaust system built by Marcco Muffler in Orangevale, California. The exhaust is set up to exit out the side of the body through the rear quarter panels. The exit points are trimmed with riveted custom-made aluminum bezels.

The engine packaging is highly detailed with Billet Specialties valve covers, braided noses, chrome fittings and chromed pan, and it sports body color on the block. Moving the dyno rated 750 hp and 800 lbs-ft of torque is a Hughes-built 700 R4 with a 2,900-rpm billet torque converter. Eric had Denny’s Driveshafts build him custom two-piece 61-inch drive shafts for the truck. This drive shaft is supported at the center carrier bearing with a CCT joint assembly. According to Eric, “Even with close to 800 horsepower going down this system, the two-piece unit delivers the goods!”

The body is a sweet piece of clean sheet metal. Eric shaved off all the usual suspects, losing the door handles, trim pieces and side makers, and he boxed in the tailgate, etc., as well. The hood was opened up for the blower, and the blower drive is covered with a So-Cal Hood Blister. At the rear, the tailgate is boxed in so the whole back panel is now one-piece with twin round vertically mounted taillights, with a rolled pan and frenched license plate mount. The floor of the bed was raised 3 inches to accommodate the notched frame. The bed floor is now finished off with varnished oak flooring with stainless rub strips, riveted side panels and polished and brass striped, detailed wheel tubs. Eric also made a pair of aluminum display missiles for the truck bed to follow through with its World War II fighter plane “Second Chance” theme.

Up front, Eric shaved and recessed the stock bumper, finishing it in body color along with the grille that now uses only the stainless trim for highlights. The body is finished in Olive Drab Green but with a gloss finish rather then the traditional OD Green matte. The color extends into the grille, engine bay and interior. The paint is highlighted with a nose-art detail Miss Second Chance on each front quarter. The stunning paint was done at Haskins Hot Rods in Roseville, California, with graphics applied by Mike Clines.

Inside, the C-10 features a complete aviation-themed makeover. Nothing is stock! The dash panel was remade, and the seats were done bomber pilot style in aluminum with brass trimming by Frank Wallic. Riveting is displayed everywhere, and the solid steel center console splits the cab from the dash to the rear cab wall. It features the sound system, a Moon fire extinguisher and A/C vents. The seats are upholstered in brown saddle leather, as is the dash pad and door tops. The floors are trimmed with matching brown carpet to complement the saddle leather. All of this software was done by Jim’s Upholstery in Folsom, California. The dash panel features aviation-styled Classic Instruments with exposed screw mounting frame, and a Billet Specialties steering wheel tops off the look with a matching brown leather rim.

Eric took the truck to the Grand National Roadster Show in Pomona, California, and went home with a string of awards for his good effort, including the 2010 Sweepstakes win and Best Truck Motor. A few weeks later he picked up First in Class at the Sacramento Autorama. Not bad for a truck that’s was going to go drag racing!

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